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Krazy & Ignatz 1931-1932: A Kat a'lilt with Song    by George Herriman order for
Krazy & Ignatz 1931-1932
by George Herriman
Order:  USA  Can
Fantagraphics, 2004 (2004)
* * *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

This large softcover book includes cartoonist George Herriman's black and white Krazy & Ignatz comic strips, published from 1931-1932 (edited by Bill Blackbeard and Derya Ataker). Delightful extras like the '"Fourth" Follies in Krazy Kat's Kountry' add to the entertainment.

These humorous comic strips, set in Coconino County, are filled with ample alliteration. They begin with Krazy Kat seeking to sow his 'wild oats' on the advice of the 'Third Eye'. Then we see the erudite Ignatz Mouse bonking Krazy with bricks (he lobs these missiles on a regular basis) as an adoring Kat murmurs 'L'il Ainjil'. And of course Offisa Pup, protective of Krazy Kat (whom he calls 'salt of the earth'), jails Ignatz at every opportunity. I especially enjoyed the 'Mystic of Mysore, and Man of Magic' and the solitaire sequences, also a recurring elephant theme. And the language is marvelous, as when Krazy 'peregrinates' or 'Something under a sombrero seems to be sauntering swiftly ...'

If you haven't pored over any of Herriman's comics yet, then I recommend this 1931-1932 series to you. They're both silly and slapstick, yet also literate, the use of dialect and command of language as entertaining as the cartoons themselves. Great fun!

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